Eating an Elephant

Dec 10

How do you eat an elephant?

One bite at a time.

The Israelites were perched on the edge of the Jordan River. As they stood, they looked out at the land before them and felt overwhelmed. They were given a gift but were afraid to take it. God promised them “a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and honey.” (Deut. 8:8)

As God’s chosen people gazed out over the vast goodness the Lord promised, they were afraid. We know this because Moses kept repeating, “Do not be afraid.” They weren’t afraid the Jordan was too cold to cross. They didn’t think they might be allergic to milk and honey. Their fear came from a knowledge of the nations living in the land – nations bigger and stronger than them.

After spending forty years wandering the desert, God was telling them to possess a land full of giants. The task seemed insurmountable. Their biggest challenge was to believe. Believe that it was possible. Believe that God wouldn’t leave them high and dry. Believe that He would go before them “like a devouring fire and destroy [their enemies].” (Deut. 9:3)

How was it possible to drive out the nations in a land so great?

One bite at a time.

Deuteronomy 7:22 says, “The Lord your God will drive out those nations before you, little by little. You will not be allowed to eliminate them all at once, or the wild animals will multiply around you.” Did you notice what that said? Little by little.

One bite at a time.

When there appears an insurmountable task before me – when I look at the circumstances around me and can’t see the other side, I pray. I pray for God to show up in a big way. As I pray, I often imagine him popping onto the scene and wiping out everything before me with one giant AMEN. God could if He wanted to, but more often than not, it doesn’t happen that way. It happens little by little.

But I’m learning God does everything for a reason. Moses tells the Israelites the Lord’s reason for not allowing them to eliminate all the nations at once – wild animals. Perhaps He is protecting me from the wild animals, as well.

One of the greatest stories of all time is the Israelites journey into the Promised Land. If God chose to eliminate their circumstances little by little, then He may certainly choose to do the same with mine.

One bite at a time.

So what is it you are chewing on today?

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  • tiggerdaisy Dec 10 at 6:22 pm

    I needed this today!!! (By the way, I found you by way of Lelia.)

    I'm about to start writing a teaching on the power of words. And I can do it—one bite at a time! THANKS for the encouragement!

    Prayers and blessings,

  • Pastor Florine Newberry Dec 15 at 1:11 am

    I enjoy this so much

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